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MH17: Dutch investigators inspect bodies as violence erupts in Ukraine

An armed pro-Russia separatist crawls on the ground near the train station on July 21, 2014 as intense shelling rocked the area in the rebel stronghold of Donetsk, Ukraine. - AFP

 

TOREZ (Ukraine): Dutch investigators on Monday inspected bodies recovered from downed passenger airliner MH17 which had been loaded onto a train under rebel control not far from the crash site.

Each of the train wagons carrying the corpses was opened and examined by two men wearing masks and headlights.

"I think the storage of the bodies is (of) good quality," Peter Van Vliet, the forensic expert leading the Dutch team, said after examining the corpses.

The expert, speaking as 50 armed insurgents looked on, said his team would head to the main crash site about 15km away.

Forensic experts from The Netherlands speak with OSCE inspectors while checking bodybags in a train's refrigerated coach. - EPA

The investigators were accompanied by a team of international monitors from the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe who have been visiting the impact site over the past few days.

A team of Malaysian officials were also due to arrive on Monday. 

The Reuters reported that Ukrainian army tanks were launching an assault to break pro-Russian rebels' hold on the eastern city of Donetsk in the first major outbreak of hostilities in the area since Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 was shot down last week.

A separatist leader said Ukrainian government forces were trying to break into Donetsk and fighting was under way near the railway station.

Sergei Kavtaradze, of the rebels' self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic, said at least four tanks and armored vehicles were trying to break through into the city.

A Ukrainian military spokesman said the operation was in progress but would not comment on reports of troops entering Donetsk.

"The active phase of the anti-terrorist operation is continuing. We are not about to announce any troop movements," Vladyslav Seleznyov said.

Reuters journalists also saw two rebel tanks heading towards Donetsk railway station.

As international horror deepened over the fate of the remains of the 298 victims of the air disaster.

Rescuers said they had found a total of 251 bodies and 86 body fragments at the crash site and a second refrigerated train had arrived.

The shooting down of the airliner on Thursday has sharply deepened the Ukrainian crisis, in which separatists in the Russian-speaking east have been fighting government forces since protesters in Kiev forced out a pro-Moscow president and Russia annexed Crimea in March.

The United States and its allies have pointed the finger at the pro-Russian rebels and at Moscow itself over the downing of the plane although Russia has denied involvement.

 

Source: The Star Online

 

 

 
 
More on MH17
MH17 plane crash: Dutch experts examine bodies.
Source: BBC News

MH17: Dutch experts arrive at crash scene as heavy fighting breaks out.
Source: The Guardian

Malaysia Airlines Flight 17: Eight unanswered questions.Source: CNN


Malaysia Airlines crash updates as anger grows over "disrespectful" treatment of bodies by rebels.

Source: Mirror Co. Uk

 
MH17: Russian Ambassador to Malaysia speaks up

The Star Online

 
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